Saturday, April 28, 2007
It has been a very hectic couple of months, with work, technical difficulties with the camera and million other issues. So here is one of my favorite comfort pasta recipes. Pesto Cavatappi is my standard order when I go to Noodles and Co. I believe it is also one of the easiest of the Italian recipes too ...
Cavatappi Pasta - 1/2 pack
Roma Tomato - 1
Heavy whipping Cream - 1 1/2 tbsp
Olive Oil - 1 tbsp
Parmesan Cheese - 1 tbsp Shredded
Basil Leaves - 1 cup
Garlic - 3 to 4
Whole Pepper - 5 to 6
Pine nuts - 1 tbsp toasted
Salt - to taste
Parmesan cheese - 1 tbsp grated
Olive oil - 4 tbsp
I make the pesto at home following Micheal Chiarello's Spring Garlic Pesto and Blanched Basil Pesto recipes modifying the quantities and texture to my liking. Make a coarse paste of all the ingredients listed under pesto in a blender. You can also increase the quantity for later use. I normally make extra and freeze the pesto and use it when I am in a hurry. While you are making the pesto cook the pasta according to the instructions on the pack. When the pasta is almost done, heat a separate deep saute pan and pour 1 tbsp of olive oil. Add the tomatoes and saute for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the pesto (at least 2 tbsp - you can add more if you like) and slowly stir in the the drained pasta . After 1 minute add in the heavy whipping cream. Let the liquid reduce in the pan for about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Serve immediately. Top with grated Parmesan cheese.
The original recipe also calls for sliced sauteed mushrooms and white wine. Add sauteed mushrooms along with the tomato and then add 1-2 tbsp of any good Italian white wine after you have added the pasta.
Cavatappi is a ridged pasta like penne. You can find it in the pasta aisle of any grocery store like Safeway/ Wholefoods/Jewel etc.
For this recipe to top off I have used Parmigiano Reggiano, as I ran short of the american Parmesan cheese after making the pesto. Parmigiano Reggiano has a fruity/nutty taste and a slightly gritty texture. This cheese is also way suprerior (in gourmet points) in flavor and taste to the regular American parmesan cheese available in most stores available grated/ shredded.
I like to have this pasta with the Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce.